Concern is growing over the environmental impact of medications that are discharged into the environment.
Nationally, unused drugs generated 740 tons of waste.
U.S. Environmental Protection Agency,
ProPublica, April 27, 2017.
“Prescription medications, if improperly disposed, may end up in source water and cause concern for drinking water utilities. We should all think downstream about how our actions affect others in the watershed. Whether a contaminant is agricultural pollution, improperly disposed pharmaceuticals, animal waster or untreated wastewater, the Des Moines Water Works supports stopping the pollution where it starts. In the case of prescription medications, proper disposal means cleaner, safer source water.
Des Moines Water Works supports the work of the Iowa Drug Donation Repository, which is leading efforts to appropriately dispose of prescription medication through donation of unexpired and unopened medications. The Iowa Drug Donation Repository makes proper disposal of medications a convenient alternative to flushing unused medications down the toilet or drain.
Stopping medications from entering waterways in the first place is the best approach. Not only does the Iowa Drug Donation Repository offer disposal that benefits environmental and human health, the Repository provides a critical service to Iowans in need of assistance at little or no cost — a win-win undertaking.”
Jen Terry, Environmental Advocacy Leader, Des Moines Water Works